Our Montana 2002 hiking trip!


14 miles from Gillette 17 Gallon tank, 30mpg average equals 510 miles. Sioux Falls, SD, to Gillette, WY, is about 480 miles. We ran out of gas 466 miles from Sioux Falls, 14 miles from Gillette. What went wrong? 1. With Nate, I, and all of our camping stuff, there was extra weight. 2. It's uphill all the way. 3. It's into the wind the whole way. 4. We had the AC on for the majority of the time. 5. I usually am not driving 85mph to average 30mpg. All of these are things we failed to take into account, thus our stranded situation.


Storm Coming This is a storm as it approaches where we ran out of gas. As the car was sputtering to a stop, we decided to come to rest under an overpass, mostly for shade purposes. As we waited for AAA to come with gas, we noticed this storm approaching, and were glad to be under the bridge when it hit.


Company under the bridge The storm hit about 15 minutes after we parked. It was a fairly heavy downpour that included hail up to an inch in diamater, so many people took shelter under the bridge. We just acted like that was the reason we were there too. The storm let up about 30 minutes later, and everybody left, just in time for the gas guy to get there.


Beartooth Lookout fog I had never seen the Beartooth Highway fogged in before this trip. Driving up it was a treat, as the fog was very, very thick. The lookout point below is where we finally broke out of the fog and were able to get some great pictures.


Beartooth Highway fog Looking across Rock Creek Canyon here with the fog makes it easy to forget the canyon floor is a 1/2 mile below the cloud layer.


Lady of the Lake This is lake is called "Lady of the Lake". It's about 1.5 miles from the trailhead just north of Cooke City. This is about a fifth of the way to our campsite, so we didn't hang around long. This would be a nice day hike, though, if one was so inclined.


Mountains north of trail Just to the right and slightly behind the peak at center lies Grasshopper Glacier. I visited it once, back in 1997 and hoped to do it again. However, the hike to our campsite this year was more strenuous than we imagined (of course) and farther from the glacier than we thought. Maybe another time.


South part of Sliver Lake Sliver Lake was our destination, and this picture is looking south from our campsite. Sliver lake is named so, because it is basically 100 yards wide or less, and about 3/4 of a mile long. The brook trout that we caught here were large for the Beartooths (12-16 inches), but catching them was difficult.


North and East of our Campsite This is a view northeast of our campsite. Having big boulders like this jutting out into the water was convenient. The water was deep right off the rocks and extremely clear. It made for easy access to drinking water, and for the crazy among us (Nate), it made a handy diving platform. I did that once a few years back. Once. No more.


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